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Full text of "Partial Application for HCM #137 The Dutch Chocolate Shoppe, Los Angeles"

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for research and preservation of ceramic surfaces 



January 2, 1995 





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Mrs. Mary George 

Cultural Heritage Commission 

433 S. Spring Street, 10th Floor 
Los Angeles, CA 90013 

Dear Mrs. George: 

It was a pleasure for both Sheila Menzies and myself to meet you and your fellow 
commissioners and to join you in visiting Finney's Cafeteria (what we know as 
'The Chocolate Shop") on December 21st. I must apologize for not coming to 
your meeting better prepared. Had I known that any of the commissioners were 
unfamiliar with Finney's and its historic importance, I could have brought with 
me a portfolio on the building for each of you to review. I am hoping now that I 
am not too late. 

Decorative tile installations represent an art form that has only recently been 
recognized for its historic importance in the United States. Whether on the 
exterior or interior of a building, ceramic surfaces of today are not unlike the 
cave paintings of ancient times. They serve as reflections of an era and 
demonstrate the creativity of an artistic community* Permanently fired into clay, 

they represent a means by which people have chosen to conceptualize themselves 
and to inspire others for many years to come. 

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tile installation at Finney *s is totally unique, designed and produced in 1914 
small factory called Batchelder & Brown in Pasadena specifically for that 
This was the single most important commission for Ernest A. Batchelder, 
only recently retired as director of art at Throop Polytechnic Institute. This 
llation propelled him into the forefront of architectural ceramic design in 
California, a position he never relinguished until his company 


agnized internationally for his achievements in ceramic 

design and installation. Without question, he is among only a handful of American 
craftsmen to have achieved such prominence during his lifetime. His tiles and 

pottery are coveted by collectors today; he is revered as one of the founders of 


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the Arts and Crafts Movement in America. Finney's is the first of his major 
architectural installations, comparable only to the lobby of the Fine Arts Building 
on West 7th Street, completed eleven years later. These two installations are the 

only two that are extant in Los Angeles, and there are only two others of 
comparable stature extant in the U.S. and Canada. The historic importance of 
Finney's cannot be overstated. 

A word about an assertion you may have heard Mr. Kenneth Asian, the owner's 
representative, make while we were with him at Finney's. He claimed that he was 
losing business, that vendors had dropped their leases at the end of November, 
because they were not pleased with the surroundings at Finney 's. He took us to the 
jewelry mart down the street to show us an example of what commerce should be 
like at Finney's providing the space was not so highly regulated. You may recall 
that quite a number of the shops at Finney 's, including the one he ordered 
dismantled for us, were closed. However, Sheila and I returned to Finney's by 
ourselves later that afternoon and, to our surprise, we found all of the shops 
open, including the earlier dismantled one, and business was thriving. I felt we 
had been taken for "a ride." 

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On behalf of the members of the Tile Heritage Foundation, I urge the commi 
to recognize the significance of Finney's as a historic-cultural monument and 
«*™rr.TT,f.nd that the alterations be reversed so as to avoid further damage to 

tiled walls and ceiling in accordance with The Secretary of the interior s 
Standards for Rehabilitation. The means are available today to professionally 
repair the damage that has occurred. 

If there is any additional information I can provide or if there is anything that 
can do personally to assist in this endeavor, please let me know. I am willing tc 
meet with you in Los Angeles at any time. 




Sincerely yours, 

Joseph A. Tayl 








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November 10, 1994 

Ms. Mary George, President 
Cultural Heritage Commission 
433 S Spring Street, 10th Floor 
Los Angeles, CA 90013 

Dear Ms, George: 

As President of the Friends of Terra Cotta. I urge the Cultural Heritage Commission to 
recommend (and enforce to the best of your legal abilities) that the alterations be 
reversed on the Chocolate Shop interior at 217 Vest 6th Street. On my last trip to Los 
Angeles, in March 1990, 1 visited this site. At the time, an audio-electronics supply^ 
s^Ssfe occupied it" I had the opportunity, amidst piles of boxes, to see the wonderful" 
Batchelder tiles. The owners then were very proud of the tile decor which they 
thought had been imported from Europe, They seemed rather disbelieving thataloca 
tilemaker was responsible for the work! 

Batchelder 's work is widely recognised by ceramicists, historians, architects and 
collectors (the prices are staggering) throughout the United States. In New York we 
have numerous floors, apartment house lobbies, and swimming pools ornamented 
with Batchelder tile. As I travel around the country I am always pleased to find 
Batchelder tiles — including those I saw on recent trips to Detroit and Cincinnati. 

The Friends of Terra Cotta, a national preservation organization founded in 1981, has 
worked very hard to save ceramic surfaces in architectural settings. We are aware of 
the difficulties involved, especially in protecting interiors. After a great deal of 
advocacy work, the New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission recently 

designated the Rookwood and Guastavino tiled interior of the former Delia Robbia Bar 
at 4 Park Avenue, NYC. Built in 1912, just two years before the Chocolate Shop, this is 
one of the few remaining tile interiors from a period of great popularity for terra 

COtta and tile . (See enclosed nnst card 1 

We hope that you will be able to protect the Chocolate Shop — it is especially 
important as interest in architectural ceramics continues to grow. We are very 
-pieased that the tiled pyramid-shaped roof of the Los Angeles Country Library war- 
recently restored and, in addition, that the terra cotta arm and torch at its pinnacle 
were replaced. (Our most recentFriends of Terra Cotta mailing included a survey of 
the restoration aspects of this large project.) Don 't let 
overshadowed by serious damage to another historically significant 

Chocolate Shop 


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Susan Tunick 


Friends of Terra, Cotta 

cc: Mr. Jay Oren 

Mr. Ai Nodal 

Friend? of Terra Cotta /New York State 

C/O Tanick. 771 W«t End Avenue 10E 


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The Chocolate Shop at Los A 



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A traveler on the Pacific Coast can not fail to be 
Impressed! with the evident aim of business 
men. especially retailers and those who cater 
to the personal wants of customers, to give an artistic 
air to tncar shops and stores. They have even gone 
so far as to provide special costumes- and variations 
from the vernacular for their employees. This, es- 
pecially jn Los Angeles, bespeaks the cosmopolitan 
character of the population. 

Naturally some of these efforts arc misdirected 
and often ridiculous: but in the main they have b^tn 
very successful In Los Angeles the fitting up and. 
decoration of some of the shops has involved great 
expense, for in some of them there arc galleries of 
painting and sculpture that vie with many of the 
.private collections on the coast. Here there is a chain 
of chocolate shops treated in different styles, one of 

which is most appropriately decorated in the Dutch 

For this purpose an old building was taken and the 
first story entirely remodeled. In fact it was rebuilt, 
leaving only the supports for the upper floors. It 
being a double building with a row of columns in the 
center, one-half of the width at the front was giver. 
only to the entrance shop where counters were re- 
quired, and the rear part, with columns In the center, 
was httcd up as a lunch room with table service. 

The architects. Plummer and Fell, of Los Angeles. 

designed the whole interior as :f it were an indepen- 
dent structure. The entire rear part was built around 
the interior columns and from piers against the outer 
walls, with groined arches of reinforced concrete. No 
windows were provided, and the whole was arranged 
for artificial lighting and ventilation, the impression 
to be produced being that a visitor should feel as far as 
possible as if in a foreign country — in Holland, The ' 
entire interior detail eksigr. and setting was intrusted 
to Ernest A. Batchelder. of Pasadena, who drew the 
cartoons, made all the hies and terra cotta ornament- 
ation at his studio at Pasadena, and carried out the 

installation in the building. 

He had the necessary preparation, having made 
extensive sketches in Holland and Belgium, which, 
with his experience in clay modeling and tile making, 
enabled him to carry out the whole scheme success- 

The illustrations give examples of various parts of 
this remarkable interior. Figure I is a view- of the 
shop in the front part as seen by one entering from 

the street. The three remaining views give examples 
of the decorated wall panels, of which there are about 

nine hundred superficial feet altogether. 

The subject of one wall panel was suggested by a 

sketch of Maestricht, made by Mr. Batchclder, w'ith 
foreground additions from other sketches. Another 
shows three panels, decorated with fragments from 
three sketches made in Holland. The two outside ' 

panels are to the same scale. The panel over the door 
is purposely made to a smaller scale to show that the ■ 
three pictures are not connected. The fourth shows 
the water gate ut Hooen. It will be noted that the 
larger pictures show a river in the foreground, and the 
horizontai line h thus preserved to give an effect of 

unity toVll of them. Beneath each panel is a row of 

quaint fruit and bird tiles. The panels have a rich 
luminous efrcct of color and give the necessary con- 
trast to the larger area of plain tiles. 

The panel tiles are modeled in low relief which - 
emphasizes the outlines of the figures and all arc col- 
ored as well. These distinctions can not be shown 
truly in pictures made from photographs, but in real- 
ity this effect is brought out by the electric lighting of 

the room; or was before they were re-colored by some 

one who had nothing to do with their execution. 
Fortunately these illustrations show them as originally : 
made, and are from photographs taken before the 
lighting was changed. The pictorial tiles were made 
with a semi-glaze, which took the light better where 
relief was introduced. 

The preservation of the unity of these large pic- 
torial designs which had to go through so many 
processes before Completion, was so important and 
necessary that it will be interesting to know how it 
was done. We therefore asked Mr. Batchelder if he 
would reveal the process, and he has kindly given the - 
following description, 

"The composition, of course, was the first thought. 
In working out these schemes we made our compo- . 
sit:on to a small scale, in charcoal, jn order to get the 
massing and space breaking, utilizing For local details . 
all the data that we could get hold of*. Having es- 
tablished the scheme on a small scale wc then erected 
a long board in the studio, which enabled us to keep 
two full-sized cartoons going at once. There cartoons 
were made pics shrinkage, and were worked up in 
charcoal and colored crayons with such changes as' 
were necessary in the full size enlargements from the 

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(Continued from poge /') 

a tunnel kiln of the la test type, where 
I th* temperatures would reach2100 tf 
i F. Every twenty-four hours six tons 

£-pf tile moved alone this; circuit. With 
jthe help of the "perpetual card in 
'fcentory," the tiles were assembled 

| once again after firing, checked for 
m% .quality, and then routed to the ship- 
ping room where they were packed 
\^ and shipped directly to the job site 

{♦or to showrooms in San Francisco. 
Portland-, New York, Houston or 

; The manufacturing pro- 
is from betrinnme to end 
preserved the lively and 

unique appearance of each 

[Individual tile, £wrv ?tei> 

j&lQng the way was simple 

mi crucial, and every 

Worker was involved in 

'itical decisions. Each 

ichelder tile has a feeling 

fof presence, immediacy and 

human contact. 

Batch elder began pro 
during tile m Pasadena in 
1912 and at the height oi 
jjSiemand employed 175 
workers at the tile works on 
Artesian Street in Los An- 

As production in- 
, Bafcchelderwasde- 
ermined that the sponta- 
neity not be lost One story 
claims, that he hired one 
worker to slightly mar each 
lite so as to retain the look 
v| ' of the original handcrafted 
tile from the earfv davs 

came active in civic affairs in their be- 
loved Pasadena. 'I "he two were hon- 
ored in 1936 with the Arthur Noble 
Award for outstanding citizens. Their 

scrc^eiccr-Wiison Wcs. circc ^925. Pn&o sv Om m#*% 

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='-e ^Hich cares *^ 

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'co '925 No + rce the magoiTicenr design of the center *rorn one airectlon to the ner. 

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when tiles were laid out to 

[tiffin the garden in Pasa- 
Jeena and might be walked 

•f ' on by local chickens create 

Thedrastic effects of the 
Great Depression forced 
the closure of main- tile 

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prks throughout the 

untry. Batchelder dis- 

rtinued operations in 
Both Ernest and his 

bols of their marriage. Above the fire- 
place mantel two of Batchdder's terra 
cotta lions, one on each side of the tiled 
facade, hold shields, each with a differ- 
ent symbol: a rabbitor hare for Ernest 
and a harp for Alice. Ernest contin- 
ued his work in clay in 1 936 produc- 
ing Kinncloa pottery, a slip-cast 
whiteware glazed often in pastel 
colors. He sold the pottery in 1949 
shortly after the death of his wife. 
Batchelder died at his home on Au- 
gust 6, 195/, at the age of 82. . 

Although Batchelder' s last tiles 
were produced in the early 1930b, 
many remain to be seen and ad- . 


mired today in both res?- v 
denhal and commercial ii»- ,' 
spallations. One M'?>- 

Batchclder's largest con> ' 
missions was for the Chapel 
of our Lady of Victory at 
Saint Catherine's College 
in St. Paul, Minnesota 
( 1 924 ), where the wa 1 1 s, col- 
umns and corbels as wep 

as the entire Campanile En- 
trance are tiled. The tobbv , 

of the Fine Arts Building 
on West 7*h Street in Los 
Angeles, designed by 
Walker & Risen in 1924, is 
another magnificent, and 
readily accessible, example 
as is the lobby of the Ma- 
rine Buildmgin Vancouver, 
British Columbia (1929). 
Other sites include the 
Christian Science Church 
in St, Petersburg, Florida;, 
the Plaza Hotel in San An- 
tonio, Texas; Lake 
Yellowstone Hotel in 
Yellowstone National • 
Park; Union Sta tion in Chi- 
cago; the Reading Public • 
Museum in Reading, Perm- 
sylvania; and the Arts 
Building at Ball State Uni- 
versity in Muncie, Indiana. 
Batchelder referred to 
his tile opera tion as "a com- 
mendable bit of enter- 

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jfe, Alice Coleman, a 

fted concert pianist and founder of 

ie Coleman Chamber Concerts, be- 

no me on tne Arroyo Seeo, a fine Swiss 
chalet-style bungalow, contains svm- 

pnse." "There is/' he wrote,; 

"a dignity to hand labor, a 
dignity ci the mind and 

heart, not of the hand alone." 


01/0 3/19 9 5 12:24 



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by Marie Closse Tapp 



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Among the tiles produced during 
;l the Arts and Crafts period, the carved 
I relief tiles of Ernest Batchelder, each 
j handcrafted from local earthen ma- 
": terials, are a clear embodiment o( the 
[Arts and Crafts philosophy. 
• Batchelder wrote of those ideals in 
. his two books, Principles of Design 
> (1908) and Design in Theory and Prac- 
tice (1910), where he set out his pre- 
cepts of ordered design: harmony, 
balance and rhythm. These precepts 
are seen in his choice and arrange- 
ment of subjects which were often 
drawn from themes of medieval her- 
aldry including those favored by Wil- 
liam Morris and his English cohorts: 
.sunflowers, peacocksand Viking ships. 
In his later writings, "A Little His- 
tory of Batchelder Tiles" (1925)and "A 

iLitic [sic] Journey Through the 
JBatchelder Factory"' (circa 1925), the 
tile maker revealed his sense of humor 
jand a keen sense of appreciation for his 


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staff. For Batchelder, clay wasclay; the 

scale of the operation might change but 
the process and methods remained the 

same whether using one ton a month or 
si x tons a dav. 

The Batchelder fac- 
tory in Los Angeles 

which he de- 
scribes with much 
pride was very 

well organized. 
The preparation 
process involved 

the drafting room 
where drawings 

of all the tile de- 
Signs were cre- 
ated on pa per and 

the laboratory 

where the quali- — 

ties of all the materials were 
checked on delivery. There was 
the dust-filled mixing room 
where the roar of the pulveriz- 
ing machines filled the air ai\d 
the quieter order room where 
two people broke down each 
incomjng order, recording the 
status of each rile in production 
with what was called the "per- 
petual card inventory-'' 

The formation phase in- 
volved numerous sta ecs In the 

modeling room, Mr. and Mrs. Ingels, 
Batchelder's master carvers in the 
mid -'20s, worked in wet clav, inter- 
preting the sketched designs. En- 
larged master riles were made for 
each design, allowing for the clay's 
inevitable shrinkage, and these were 

t to the casting department where 
a key moid was made from each mas- 
ter, The key molds, from which pro- 
duction molds were produced, were 
kept in a fireproof vault. Figures tiles, 
borders and corbelsall required plas- 
ter mold 5. 

All small forms and special fea- 
tures were made in the pressing room. 
The clay was compressed in a steb 
roller, cut to rough size and pressed 
into a mold by hand or with a simple 
lever press. Excess clay was wired off, 
and the fresh rile was flipped out of the 
mold onto a ware board. These boards 
were then loaded onto rail cars to begin 

their journey 
through the dry- 
ing rooms, some o f 
which were over 
fifty feet long with 
from three to six 

The degree of heat 
increased gradu- 
ally as the tiles 
slowly passed 
through the dry- 

Trie he© or robbif wos Botcheider's 
oe'sonai ^edemcrx. 

PhOff O fcy Don* Winters 

As the drv tiles 
emerged, they 

were arranged by 
orders in the green stock room. Stf 1 
fragile in this unfired state, they were 
carefully stacked ready for glaring. At 
this point some tiles were bisque fired, 
glazed and then refired. Others wens 

<a»i t-nguDe nrusn m tne green 

state and single fired. Figures tiles were 
brushed with Batchelder's blue slip (one 
of a handful of colors used) and topped 
with a muted hue. Finally, the endless 
chain of cars moved through "No. 11 " 

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01/03/1995 12:23 



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CGonfinuec? from page 9) 




\ ■sides of each tile, which assist tile set- 
?ters in obtaining even grout joints 
•^throughout an installation. Ceramic 
jiposaics were increasingly 

Ipopuiar after the turn of 
'the century but expensive 
;]to handle. Batchelder's so- 

ing room; "A Pressing Engagement 
for the press room; "A Few Dry Re- 
marks" for the dry room; and, appro- 
priately, "A Burning Subject" for the 

There is no doubt that as his busi- 
ness grew and became more prosper- 


Four year* later , in 1936, at the age of 
61, Batchelder was back into clay, this 
time literally making pote, a line of 
slip-cast bowls and vases called 
Kinneloa, which he sold successfully 
through department store chains. He 
prided himself in personally signing 

most of the ware; and he 


Juiion was simply to scribe 

pints into a larger tile, so 

£hat when it was grouted it 

ve the impression of be- 

ig made up of small tiles. 

[.Many of the figure tiles 

1 1 iwere conveniently P ro * 
| duced in different sizes, a 

|| few from as large as 18" by 
jf 15" down to as small as 2" 
10 : by- 2". And although old 
*>*** [ patterns were never elimi- 
nated from the product line, 
more contemporary tile de- 

■ signs were added to keep 
current with what the mar- 



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L-Jcet demanded. 

In "A Litle [sic] Jour- 

ney through the Batchelder Factory" 

|| written in 1925, Batchelder asserted, 

♦We have a reasonable pride in our 

nt as it stands todav. It is a whoie- 

Batcneice'-wnscrt catalogs published *n the late ^920s. 

some place in which to work 

well lighted/' He noted 
t for inspiration a garden 

^H.was planted outside, adjacent 

'■ to the modeling room "where 

California flowers bloom the 

year through." Despite the !>ize 

of the facilities and the many 

^complexities that a large cc- 

!ramic business must endure, 

•J |JBatchelder seemed to main- 

|" tain a genuine appreciation for 

|| ;his workers and enough of a 

iistance from the mundane 


ous, even before his move to Los Ange- 
les in 1920, Ernest Batchelder had little 
if any contact with the clay itself. The 
"dignity to hand labor"' which he wrote 
so eloquently about was left to others; 

BorcnelcJe^-Wiisor. 'signotur© *" ril e. 

Sit of f?5Cha'<2 A. 8c^t*a 

ily routine at the factory to sustain 

sense of humor. He referred to his 

elingroom, for example, asa "veri- 

:able hatchery of ideas" and to his dry- 

)g rooms as 'Turkish baths," In his 
ription of the facility, a tour to fa- 
miliarize architects, installers and other 
istomers with the prod uction process, 
chose a number of jocular headings; 
ifthe Die is Cast" to describe the cast- 

his was "a dignity of the mind and 
heart." He was, after all, trained as a 
teacher and designer, a master of the 
craft turned entrepreneur. 

Batchelder-Wilson was a victim of 
the Great Depression, closing its doors 
in 1932. The Pomona Tile Manufactur- 
ing Company sold off much of the in- 

ventory,and all that remained waslater 
sold to the Bauer Pottery- Company, 


intentionally kept the 
era Hon small to maintain 
a personal touch. When 
questioned by the Pasa- 
dena Star News in 1948 re- 
garding his plans, 
Batchelder said, 'That's 
the way 1 like it. I don't 
want to expand, I've been 
there before." 

Ernest Allan Batch- 
elder died in Pasadena in 

1957 at the age of 82. His 
legacy in clay lives on 

Author's note: Over the past 
twenty years or so, there have 

been numerous articles of vary- 
ing length and sophistication 
written about Ernest Batchelder. 
Recently, considerable research 
has been undertaken by Robert 
Winier, Norman Karlson, M arte 
Tapp, and no doubt other?, which has pur io rest 

many of the inaccuracies which have been per- 
petuated un witting) y. i have tried to present here 
the most updated and accurate inforrrtahon avail- 
able. Questions will always persist, however, 
even a bit of controversy, but these simply pri- 

vide grist for the historian's mill 


Acknowledgements: I am in- 
debted to Robert Winter, architec- 
tural historian and Batchelder 
scholar, for so generously sharing 
the results of his many years of re- 
search . Winter's unpublished manu- ■ 
script, 'The Harp and the Hire" has 
been a continuing source of inspira* 
tion. I would like to thank Alan 


Coleman Batchelder for his reflec- 
tions and insights and for sharing 
His research concerning the 
Batch elder family history. And to 
Paul Dobbs, archivist at me Massa- 
chusetts College of A rt, for his assis- 
tance in uncovering the academic credentials of 
our illustrious tile rnaxcr. 

Answers to the Historical Q uiz: 

1 . Spanish Colonial Revival. 2- Gutrda $ece 
(dry-line); even** (raised-line). 3. Ameri- 
can Encaustic Tiling Company O/emon); 
California Gay Products CcmpanvCSoufh 
Ga re); Ciaddjn^ McSear icCo. (Ctendaie). 
4. John Ivory; BrvK-klyn, New York. 

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Loieman m the summer of 1912. he 
remodeled the mantel in his living 
room, scattering among his own tries 
Mercer's "Creation of Eve," the "Swan 
and Tower" and the "Knight of 
Margam." Years later in 1V48 in an 
interview with the Pc&adem SzarSra;*, 
Batchelder acknowledged being a Mer- 
cer disciple: 

The colors were "like those of old 
Persian rugs" and were described as 
hmuwm, mellow and glowing. By 
using clay slips (cngobes) the tones 
were intentionally muted, designed to 
enrich and blend harmoniously into 
the residential environment without 

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The greatest of all American potters is :he 

famous Mercer of Do y lest own, Pennsviva- 

nia, Mercer wns 50C vest? out of hi? tiiite. 

/ ■ proVabty the only modern artist retmtunz 

I the glorious touch of :h* medieval m astern 

By 1912, as his neighbors were ob- 

• jecting to the "soot" generated by the 

. backyard kiln and as the demand far 

his novel ceramic products had ex- 

ceeded the capacity of" his garden stu- 

: dio, Batchelder took on a partner, 

'i Frederick L. Brown, and established a 

' : i small factory at 769 South Broadway in 

■ v Pasadena "down among the gas tanks 

un a galvanized shed in regions remote 

■from neighborly solitude.'' From forty 

isix-inch tiles per hre, the new kiln could 
handle 5Q0. Hie riles were initiallv 
r dried in the sun. "We watched them- 
( the riles — as a cook watches a pancake 

'On the griddle." When "artificial" dry- 
| ing became a logical preference, a room 
i was formed with tarpaulins and was 

f^eated with a gas stove. Soon, with t* 
f additional kilns, the capadtv reached 
' 4000 tiles. 

The new compart v, 

batchelder & Brown, 

was quick to publish a 

: catalog, the first of many 

. to appear over the next 

twenty years. The mes- 


was simple, 
straightforward, deliv- 
ered with a vi bra net? 

and pride which contin- 
ues to resonate among 
craftsmen todav: 

Oiir tiles a r <» h as c wr out!*:, 
fry process^ peculiar to cur 
own factory. They have 
slight variation* of shape 
and size- -just sufficient to 
relievo the rnonototiv &f 


machine pressed riles. The** 
variations are not sought; 
they are desirabie and \n- 
eVTrabic in a hand ;nad? 
produc:. Wc make the very 
0C5J tile wc -car* rosstfcfv 
snake- bv hand. 

1914 was a most significant year 
for Ernest Batchelder. Plummer and 
Fell, Architects, commissioned 
Batchelder & Brown to design and sup- 
ply the tiles for The Chocolate Shop in 
downtown Los Angeles. The job, by far 
the largest to date, involved the tiling of 

the entire lute- 
rior space — 

floors, walls 
and ceilings — 

and included a 
series of wall 

ing scenes 

from Holland. 


of that 

V^3T f 


* lv^c :e.ce- r-c-e overlooking *.he Arroyo Secc in Poscoe^c Col'fcr- 

■-c &/-* ~. iwic. *he first •jcrch^de f ri 'es were mode in c r-sai cordon 

j'LO:c b@**-**dfr*£ 

cuss, most ;iy$ty vp lore ; 9"0 

gave birth 
to their first 
and only 

child; Al§n 

Coleman. '■ 

3y 1930, 
the time had 

drawing undue attention. It would be 
nearly ten years before another com- 
pany would try to imitate Batchelder's 
success, and by that time he had estab- 
lished a position of insurmountable 
prominence in the market 

arrived to dra- 
matically expand the manufacturing 
facility. A site was chosen in the 2600 
block of Artesian Street in the Lincoln 
Heights area of Los Angeles, which 

CCorringed cr. pegs 10) 

» *.-.. . 

cvor de^g-; by Scfc****,^ 


?cr.C"co *v22 cr-. ;. 

* Mo-oc-. --, v-.jc'r-,- ^r ! \c^i Korjon 


: "» 

« ' 

* ■ 

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01/03/19 9 5 12:29 


'4 . 

uso 431-0350 

T 1 ?^M 3 5 6 3 3 5 

P. 88/12 

•fir *■ 

to 5tri ke ou ton his own had arrived -On 

l\i " May 24, 1909, the Pasadena Daily News 

' -|! published an erroneous story claiming 

'V; tha t Batchelder had 

| located a magnani- 

: mo us benef actor in 

« -the East and that 


if Pasadena from 
. Minneapolis that 

l U. fall he was intend- 

i-T ing to build the bis- 
|| eest art school 


Ccfiy tile by Sol 


• , *n the country. 

*■■! Batcheidcr's re- 
's :• 

>:| sponsc by letter to 
\y Jthe newspaper is 

wonderful I v re- 
yea ling:. 

In rh e N#3CS of Ma v 24 

is such a globing ac- 
. count. of the school 
fa that I am piarniin g to 
start is i'asadena nexi 
October that u rcallv 
seem? .3 shame to 
question your ver- 
sion of t he inatter. 3u: 

considonng the fact 
that f possess "insidc 

information/ f am -ed to suggest that youjr 
informant must have cultivated the imagi- 
native faculty at the expanse of accuracy. To 
■my knowledge there is no man in Boston 
with SlOp/OOO to invest in the 'biggest art 
, school in the country/ though indeed if it 
t shaujd appear that such hits arrived in Pasa- 
dena unknown to me- please have someone 
sit on him unrii \ can get home, for his 
presence would dear away a number of 
bothersome details. 

And he went on to describe his 
factual intentions for the rail of 1909: to 
^open.what he called a "productive 
j| workshop" where works would be "ex- 

sign and Handicraft/' which was to 
open on November 15th of that year. 
Thus, it seems reasonable to assume 
that his classes began in the garden 

behind the house at that time. It was the 
folk? wing November before he took 
out a permit to build a studio on the 

site, what he later 
termed the "birth- 
place" of 
Batchelder tile. 

first tiles may have 

been produced as 
a result of his own 
immediate need in 
and around his 
now house. More 
likelv, he mav 
have agreed to at- 


.'der & Brew 




empt his first 
mantel for a client. 

His "A Little His- 
tory of Batchelder 
Tiles/' written in 

1925, describes it 
this way: 

Twelve years ago/ 
Ba ten elder tiles were 
made in a Pasadena 
garden under the 
Shade of the olive 
trees. The clav was 
brought home from a brickyard wrapped in 
gunny sacks, all mixed ready for use. in 
spile of its humble origin it possessed po- 
tential beauty when brought into contact 
with adequate ideas. We had those ideas 
and sought to give them expression.... it 
took three Brings to satisfactorily produce 
our Hrst mantel order. The mantel was laid 
out on the kitchen floor and personally de- 
livered at the job because we had doubts as 
tc the trustworthiness of expressmen- -and, 
incidentally, feared the owner of the house 



ted in copper and silver, jewelry, 

enameling, leather and pottery... 

wrought articles for purposes of 

me furnishing/' but no mention of 

les per se. 

That same year Batchelder pur- 
i5ed a piece of property overlooking 
Arroyo Seco in Pasadena where he 

•about to construct a bunealow for 

irnself. Usmg an illustration of the 
jfront of the house, he placed an ad in 
jthe News that appeared or 


might change his mind. 

One thing is certain: Bate 
was highly impressed by the success o^ 
Henry Chapman Mercer, whose 
handcrafted Moravian riles from Penn- 
sylvania were revered by the propo- 
nents of Arts and Crafts in the East. In 
inly of 1907 he ordered a variety of 
these tiles, presumably for his use in his 
design classes at Throop, and it is not 
surprising that he installed some of 



* Hatchcider was remembering incorrect! v when 
he vrrote this in 1925. It was aetuaijv fifteen vears 
earner. in 2910, when he was first makjrig tiles in 
the urarden behind hi? home. By 1 9 12 he was in 
fcss firm trxozv. 

them at his home. Mercer's Teacock 
Panel" and "Birds of Tintern Abbey* 
were embedded in the stucco of the 

rO/'v Tie by BC'Cneldef & Brown, 

^ T A 

: r £Q ■■i\-'l 

cOrv *f@ by Botcnelder & 3rown, Posadftno. 

C'CG W4 Cofiec'iort Ce<Omic Tto htftOfe. 

rary : 
ifC Q 

© ny Satchelcef & ovown, »osad«nct 



Coiiectio^ On^Trfc T|» MM** 


chimney outside; Mercer's *Gry anct 

Rr;zr" was integrated into the metal-. 
work ^ the larch on his frontdoor, b 
celebration or his marriage to Alice 

fa d 

t . t 

? * 

- *■ 

t v 

' ***^ ' *#l" I ■*» 

1 ./ 3 / 1 9 9 5 12:19 


,-ti * 

■ - ." .: =■ .■> 

TO 12 


P. 87/12 

Vol. 5 No. d 

October - December 1992 



.•; .•■-• 

he Quarterly Bulletin of the Tite Heritage Foundation 





'by Joseph A. Taylor 

The history of an industry is often more 
entertaining to the -*Tit<.r than to th* reader. 
h is like bringing cu r gj € i am f?y pho Jo graph 
album v.»ith the relative? ::; 'their Sundav 
clothes. Wc all have tc Mart — somewhere 
and at some time. 

Thesearethe wordsof Ernest Allan 

-Batcheldcr, written in 1925 at the height 

of his career as a tile manufacturer in 

|.|.os Angeles. He was 50 years old. 

Ba tchelder's "start" came on Janu- 

jfff ^T 22, ^75' in Francestown, New 
— Hampshire, where nearly a ccntur 




£.,-, before "his great-great-grandfather 

* j| Amos had settled after being relieved 

|4of duty in the Revolutionary War.' 

Ernest'searly years were not easy ones- 
mother died just before his fourth 

irthd ay, and he was eventually sent to 

|ve with hisfather'sbrother who wasa 

J disciplinarian. Pie later moved to 

Boston area and in 1894 was admit- 

'_ \ «ed lo the Massachusetts Normal Art 

School, a tuition-free teacher training 

< - 



Frederick C Pierce's 6a}ch*Ld£*/Bac/:sti<r Gemot 
published by W [5. Ccnkev, Nashua, \ €W 
inpshire, in 1 89$, traces th* 5atcheJder ancef ■ 
back to Amos and beyond with ail of the birth, 

and ma rriaged a :es,occupa tiens and places 
idence. Interestingly Ernest's birthdate is 
« June2Z IS75. This author, however, has 
fcr the birthdate from hi? Death Certificate 

*— * *-s 

— • \ -* 

r* ?c:cr^ 


C0{i^;-, where he studied basic draw- 
ing instruction and was awarded a di- 

: « in Class A in 1*95. Four vears 
eceived a diploma in Class 8 


» - W 

(drawing, painting and design)and fcr 
Public School Class, which certified him 
to teach drawing in the Massachusetts 
school system. He then studied at the 
Harvard Summer School of Design un- 
der Penman Ross, a founding member 

of the Society of Arts and "Crafts -in 

Boston and one of the most influential 
scholars of the period- 

In 1901 Batchelder was offered a 
job as an instructor of manual arts at 
Throop Polytechnic Institute in Pasa- 
dena, and as a result he moved to the 
West Coast. Between 1904 and 1909 he 
taught design classes intermittently at 
the Handicraft Guild in Minneapolis, 
and he made two trips to Europe dur- 
ing these years from which many of his 
designs and much of his inspiration 
were derived. His Principles of Design 
was published in 1906, and a series of 
his articles was appearing in The Crafts- 
man, which would be published as De- 
sign in Theory and Practice in 1910. He 
was a popular teacher and a recog- ' 
nized authority on design. 

By 1909, despite his position as 
Director of Art at Throop, Batchelder 
was frustrated with the policy changes 

h .+* 

r* Tw 

V i 


■ncec* on pege £) 

It should b€ renter: Sr;- _ ■- -• • --^^-- -*** . .„*-,-* ™* jiy* *. * 

Trie i MlapFaiindrtenft-: :h , -ndir> -si, *,• ~ ^^ ' CT. ? -!^ <£^* "'VfTS^ '™ W * 3r * therefcre ^ !oM » ** 
fh« FounditJon. vital e.'rcrt, " • a --- a -"~ ^^^P^^^^P^'-t^rw^ofccntinut^tosx^poTt 

Country- Floors 3P^Oal:r ^ _- h an ciir: ac ^ t-st • ' ' ■ "^ ^ " -■* '■*>r-i -,^*-^ *« ■ i* ■ ■ * ■ i *- - ^ 


Austria ' " -v " 3 ' ^ l StOr0 * »"d dealers throughout the Uniwrf Stites. Ginada and " 

^ ^ 



1/03/ 1 995 12:18 


use 431-9850 

TO 1 

■ - 4 


* ««U *-0 N« •*"•« * V 


P. 06/12 





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{Continued from Page 105) 

smaller corn po si lions. These cartoons were then 
traced, and further refinements were made in this 
way, and the tracings were then transferred to full 
sized *labs of moist clay. As the slabs were to be cut 
into smaller units we established lightly the cutting 
lines. txxvd in transferring the designs to the ciay made 
minor changes to accommodate these units. Each 

panel was then modeled in three general planes, glazed 

and nrcd. each unit being marked with a k e y i n order 
that the panels might be properly asscmbicd when 

ready for setting. We were not intent upon rendering 
the actual colors of Holland, but had in mind the ap- 
plication of the color scheme to a given problem, 

%, ]h cases when a. definite bit of architecture has 

' been followed I have found it almost always necessary 
to. change the scheme about in order to keep the 
continuity throughout the panels. You will note. 
for example, the water lin* i? in about the same rel- 
ative place in e&ch panel and approximately in tin: 

same balance with space and mass." 

. The result of this effort will compare well with 
other ceramic wall decorations that have been ex- 
ecuted in eastern and middle States. 

W". A. Schabel and A. j. Grimm announce the 
opening of an office tor the practice of architecture 

at 335-6 Eric Building. Cleveland. Ohio. 

W'iUiam Koehl announces his association for die 
general practice of architecture, with Mr. Antonio 
DiNardo. formerly with Messrs. Hubbell & Bcnes, 
who has been associated with Arnold W. B runner, of 

New York, and has held a professorship in architecture 

at Carncjic Institute of Technology. The new part- 
nership will be known as Koehl and DiNardo, with 
offices in the Park Building, Cleveland. Ohio. 

C. G. Lancaster, architect. 203*/% East Austin 

Street. Marshall. Texas, desires to receive catalogues 
and. samples for his files. Ail his records were de- 
stroyed by fire. 

Addison C, 3erry. architect, has taken into part- 
nership C. 1. Botterton and M. R. Wainwright. The 
firm will practice architecture and engineering, with 
offices at 204 Ruff building. Hammond. Indiana. 

A recent grouping of the Curtis interests in the 
lighting field combines the National X-Ray Reflector 
Company, the X-Ray Reflector Company, of New 

"York, Inc., and Laminairc Studios, Inc. of New York 
and Chicago, under the new name of Curtis Lighting, 
incorporated- The new Curtis Building at 1119 West 
Jackson Boulevard, Chicago, will provide increased 
engineering and manufacturing facilities and enlarged 
offices for the central headquarters of the new cor- 



T it i Z? y f ) !u m 
Tkiruiu static Ra- 
diator Trap, the 
fir*: vl ill kind 
t*v*ntv ytsir* aifft, 
;is"l jCili Uk leader 
ni then; all. 

lite lr;:ckii** torest. jnd 

W(/0t! fiij^r i as the ina;:)-rr;ivoJeu <»J, 
Jcnuj the hlaz?<i rrii* n* the *»c:;ccr 
wliQ first pft*srei cJul way ;?::cl i*f: 
hi$ i7*nrw {* *crvc as a smtte to rhA>c 

who (ofiO>v a;m. 

t v v r f o'i i !>c 
T"*;v ra:i«vcu to 

The trail is blazed 
by the man ahead 

N industry, as in the 

forest, the trail is 
blamed by the man 

livdr at the 

Dummtt Ra J fat or 

More than twenty years 
ago. Mr. C. A. Dunham 
discovered and intro- 
duced a new factor in 
steam heating, the Dun- 
ham Fluid Thermostatic Radiator 
Trap., which revolutionized vacuum 
heating, and made possible today's 

effective low pressure steam heating. 

The Dunham Radiator Trap was the 

pioneer thermostatically operated 
trap, and like most pioneers who 
blaz.e the trail, it has had a host of 
rollowers. Thus does industry, as well 
as woodcraft, pay tribute to the cour- 
age and the faith of the man ahead. 

Today, as in the beginning, the Dun- 
ham Fluid Thermostatic Radiator 
Trap still leads all others in the cor- 
rectness of its design, the simplicity 
of its operation and the certainty of 
Us results, 


230 Ea»t Oiiio Str*«t, 


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u-i/i Cfwtie hinz Duf.ha-: Umu,;j S.r^a at <htc 

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